February Character Foundations: Kindness

This month in St. Johns' innovative Character Foundations program Spartans of all ages will be learning about and putting into practice kindness, which is defined as showing others they are valuable by how you treat them. 

What words come to mind when you think of kindness? Care, appreciation, respect? When we are kind to others, we can let them know how valuable they are to us by saying “I appreciate you.” “You rock." “Tell me about yourself.” Or “How can I help you?” Our words matter, so make kindness count.

This month's core value of kindness encourages us to show others how valuable they are by
how we treat them. How do you treat other people that are different than you? Do you avoid them or make an effort to get to know them? Put kindness into action this month by challenging yourself to get to know someone who is different than you are.

Say It

Kindness means showing others they are valuable by how you treat them.

Ask a Kid

  • Think of a time someone was really kind to you. How did that make you feel?
  • What did the person do to show you they thought you were valuable?
  • Think of some folks that you think are valuable. What are some ways to show them
  • kindness?

Ask a Grown Up

  • What kinds of things make you feel valued? Who shows you kindness?
  • Who do you value? How have you shown kindness to them lately?

See It

Each year, a non-profit organization called the Random Acts of Kindness Foundation sponsors Random of Acts of Kindness day. This year it is scheduled for February 17. The focus of this day is to spread generosity and kindness to others anonymously. Keep your eyes and ears open throughout this month for random acts of kindness.

Be It

During the month of February, create a list of kindness ideas and as a family execute at least 3 of them together. Examples include: paying for the car behind you in the drive thru of a fast food restaurant, leaving change on the vending machine when purchasing a snack so the next person can have some money, pick up trash in your neighborhood, take encouragement cards to the senior center, volunteer at the animal shelter, etc. The next challenge is for each member of the family to complete at least one act of kindness on their own for a family member or a friend.

Read About It

Take some time this month to read about kindness with these suggestions:

LOWER SCHOOL:

  • A Friend for Mole by Nancy Armo (PK-2)
  • A Sick Day for Amos McGee by Philip Stead (K-2)
  • Yaffa and Fatima: Shalom, Salaam by Fawzia Gilani-Williams (K-5)
  • Be Kind! by Pat Zietlow Miller (PK-1)
  • Baby Owl’s Rescue by Jennifer Keats Curtis (K-5)
  • Fly Free by Roseanne Thong (K-5)
  • The Kindness Quilt by Nancy Elizabeth Wallace (K-2)
  • Andy and the Lion by James Daughtery (K-5)
  • Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch by Eileen Spinelli (K-5)
  • The Golden Rule by Irene Cooper (K-5)
  • Grumpy Goat by Brett Helquist (K-5)
  • Chicken Sunday by Patricia Polacco (2-5)

MIDDLE & UPPER SCHOOL:

  • All Alone in the Universe by Lynne Rae Perkins (Grades 5-8) 
  • Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt (Grades 6-9) 
  • Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli (Grades 6-9) 
  • Okay for Now by Gary Schmidt (Grades 6-9) 
  • Define Normal by Julie Anne Peters (Grades 7-10) 
  • Nobody’s Princess by Esther Friesner (Grades 7-12) 
  • Son by Lois Lowry (Grades 7-12) 
  • Beastly by Alex Flinn (Grades 8-10) 
  • Marcel in the Real World by Fransisco X. Stork (Grades 8-12) 
  • Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan (Grades 9-12)